KATHMANDU, June 29: Almost 70 per cent of the households whose houses were damaged by the 2015 earthquakes have either started or completed reconstruction of their houses, according to the National Reconstruction Authority (NRA).
Of the total 788,015 earthquake victims whose houses were damaged by the earthquake, 720,742 have signed agreement with the local authorities to receive the housing grant of Rs 300,000 announced by the government. And, of the total victims signing the grant agreement, as many as 306,005 victims have started reconstruction of their damaged houses while 194,731 victims have already completed the reconstruction work. The total number of households either starting or completing reconstruction of their damaged houses accounts to almost 70 per cent of the victims receiving the housing grant.
In Sindhupalchowk, one of the 14 most affected districts, 73,419 of the total 81,908 households have started rebuilding their houses. Similarly, 64,161 of 66,387 households in Nuwakot; 59,398 of 69,658 households in Dhading; 52,448 of 58,053 in Gorkha; 52, 235 of 60,230 in Dolakha; 43,802 of 66,764 in Kavrepalanchowk; and 38,342 of 43402 in Ramechhap; have started rebuilding, according to the NRA.
NRA officials said the number of victims starting reconstruction of their houses is likely to go up further from next fiscal year as the NRA will expedite the process of releasing grants to the victims who have signed the grant agreement but have not received the grant.
NRA CEO Yubaraj Bhusal said the decision to set a deadline for collecting the three instalments of the housing grant, availability of enough technical manpower, and better coordination by the local authorities have led to the increase in the number of households starting reconstruction of their damaged houses.
The number of households which have signed grant agreement but have yet to start reconstruction is 220,006. Likewise, the NRA has not been able to sign housing grant agreement with 67,273 victims even three years after the devastating earthquake.
NRA aims to complete private housing reconstruction by the end of next fiscal year.